Oatmeal cookies, in all their lumpy nooks-and-cragginess make me think of old libraries and crowded bookshelves (I have some screencaps of my favourite book-ish scenes for you below). It’s an odd association, but they seem to be the right cookie for reading dusty hardcovers or thick block-ish softcovers.
As I’ve rambled about before, I hardly read anymore. So while I think these cookies are best with a novel, odds are that I’ll usually settle for a textbook. This summer I’m hoping to do some reading and overall it hasn’t been a bad year.
I’ve been working on the well-written The Adventures of Cavalier and Klay by Michael Chabon (which is about comics and some form of The American Dream). It’s taken me a while to get into it, but I think I finally am. Recently I finished reading the beautifully written All the Light That We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, which is a nearly solid amalgamate of metaphor and simile, and yet you never get tired of them. I also just soared through a YA novel, Games Wizards Play by Diane Duane. I started reading the series over ten years ago, which gives you some idea of how long the series has stretched on for. It was one of my favourites (and still is–it combines sci fi and fantasy and is just so optimistic and benevolent and I think most of the books are perfect.) The intergalactic ethics and the moral efforts of the main characters has a bit of a Doctor Who sort of appeal.
oatmeal cookies with dried fruits
Makes around 12 big chunky cookies. Adapted from the back of the oats package. Always reliable!
6 dried pitted dates, cut crosswise into rounds
2 handfuls dried cherries
1 generous handful dried prunes, chopped into quarters
1/2 c butter
scant 3/4 c brown sugar
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 c whole wheat flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon and 1/4 tsp allspice
1 c quick cooking oats
1/2 c rolled oats
Preheat the oven to 325F. Cover the dried fruit with boiling water and set aside to plump while you make the cookies.
Cream the butter with the sugar, then beat in the egg, vanilla, salt. Separately, whisk together the flour, spices and baking soda. Mix into the butter, then mix in the oats. Finally, drain the fruit and mix into the dough.
Portion the dough into 12 generously sized cookies (or 24 small ones). They stayed quite tall so if you want large thinner cookies, flatten the mounds of dough.
Bake until the bottoms and edges are browned, 10-15 minutes. Let cool on the tray as they’re quite soft.